Princess Emmy review – plodding horse-whisperer animation | Film

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This well-meaning, eat-your-broccoli kids’ animation from Germany steers clear of simpering princess stereotypes in its story about a young royal who’s mad about animals. She is princess Emmy, who has a secret gift: she can talk to horses. There is some nice acting here from the voice cast on the English dub, but even younger children may find Princess Emmy tame, lacking even age-appropriate levels of danger and adventure.

Ruby Barnhill voices Emmy, a full-of-beans modern princess who is told by an ancient spirit that she must pass a test to prove she’s worthy of her talking-to-horses gift. At the same time, her nemesis cousin Princess Gizana (Bella Ramsey, Lyanna Mormont in Game of Thrones) shows up at the castle for a ball. The films deserves points for showing the cousins’ blood-boiling anger with each other – so often in kids films girls are limited to nice sugary feelings, or bitchiness and envy.

Otherwise, this is pretty bland stuff. Disappointingly, the horses are silly-billy nags rather than the wild creatures that spark girls’ imaginations. Though some of the supporting characters are more fun, among them Signor Cerimonata, the extravagant master of manners and etiquette who resembles the late Karl Lagerfeld. As for the provenance of the film’s royal family, it’s a euro-pudding, with German actor Franka Potente as the queen and Scot John Hannah voicing the king.

Princess Emmy is released in the UK on 23 August.

Soundtrack Stream
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: Princess Emmy review – plodding horse-whisperer animation | Film

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